Apple might change its iPhone upgrade schedule to major handset releases every three years, instead of the current two years, Japanese business journal Nikkei Asian Review reported Tuesday.
Apple is now on a tick-tock schedule, releasing a major upgrade every other year, with an interim refresh in between. That pattern is expected to be interrupted this year with the rumored iPhone 7.
This year’s iPhone 7 is looking increasingly like it’ll be an ‘incremental’ upgrade and not a redesign, like iPhone 6 was.
Nikkei says the move to a three-year cycle for full-model changes is because of maturing technology and slowing smartphone sales. “The move is largely due to smartphone functions having little room left for major enhancements. A slowing market is another factor,” Nikkei staff writer Yuichiro Kanematsu wrote.
A leaked image of Apple’s upcoming iPhone 7 circulated on Chinese social media last week showed it was near-identical to last year’s iPhone 6S, with two tiny changes – a slight tweak to the shape of the camera lens, and the disappearance of the antenna lines from iPhone 6.
Various reports have also suggested that Apple is considering ditching the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack, in favor of headphones which plug in via the Lightning port.
[Investor’s Business Daily]